I started by browning pork shanks in some oil, then removing them from the pot and adding onions, thyme and crushed juniper berries. In went some chopped apples and then the pot was filled with fresh sauerkraut, a few bay leaves, the browned pork shanks and half a bottle of Riesling. That slowly simmered away, covered, in the oven for two hours. I removed it from the oven, adjusted some seasonings and added two racks of baby back pork ribs and it went back in the oven for another hour. The entire house smelled wonderful.
The wine was a 2005 vintage Weingut Leitz, Rudesheimer Klosterlay Kabinett Riesling from the Rheingau region of Germany. The bloom of youth was gone and the wine had a wonderful whiff of kerosene and then fragrances of ripe apples, pear skin and some lemon zest. Perfect balance between sweetness and acidity and a great flavor of apples, a touch of pineapple and some apricot.
Great wine with the sauerkraut as the sweetness played with the acidity of the fermented cabbage. The acidity in the wine also picked up on the lusciousness of the pork, especially the juicy shanks.
The year is off to a good start.
8% alcohol and around $20. Two more in the cellar.